The first step towards achieving goals is learning the art of setting them. Learn here, the steps involved in successful attainment of your goals.
Have you ever thought of where you see yourself in the next 3 to 5 years? What are your objectives and how do you plan on achieving goals be it related to fitness, finance, wellness and more?
You must have heard that success comes only if you set your goals, and if you fail to set your goals, you lack direction and focus. By setting goals, you not only take control of your direction but also set a benchmark for your actual success.
Let us get some deeper insights on this and understand the importance of setting and achieving goals.
Why is goal setting important and how to succeed in achieving goals?
We all set goals to evolve or to improve. While setting certain goals, we often tend not to foresee many other goals that are equally important. This is the reason why the art of goal setting is so important to master.
According to a study The College for Adult Learning: 10 Steps for Effective Goal Setting: Set and Achieve Goals, after you set your goals and work very hard towards them, if you feel that you are not doing enough, it is time to rethink and do more groundwork. You should spend more time thinking about what you really want and how you plan to achieve those concrete goals. While working hard on setting and achieving your goals, you should be mindful towards your sleep, your nutritional requirements, and overall health.
In simple terms, having a clear goal-setting strategy is the most crucial part to achieve your accomplishments.
What is goal setting?
Goal setting is defined as a process of identifying something we wish to achieve and setting a time frame to accomplish it using measurable objectives on the way.
People set specific goals. Goal Setting allows them to focus on the big picture while motivating them to achieve short-term goals too.
The 5 golden rules of goal setting
You must have heard of SMART goals. But do you know what that means? According to a guide Cornell University Working at Cornell: Goal setting on Goal Setting, it simply means that your goals should be powerful, and SMART. This applies to both your short term and long term goals. In simple terms, your goal should be
- Time Bound
Your goals must be very well defined and very clear. Generalized goals are not helpful because they do not provide the right direction. Your goals should show you the right way. You should set your goals in such a way that they should precisely tell you where you will end up.
To measure the degree of your success, your goals should include the achievable dates and precise financial amount. If you do not have any parameters to measure your success, you cannot celebrate milestones and successes, as you will not know what you have actually achieved.
Always set a goal that can be achieved. This does not mean that your goals should be too easy to be achieved. But if you set a goal that practically cannot be achieved, you will end up demoralising yourself and damage your confidence levels.
Setting challenges towards achieving goals and working hard with a proper plan will give you a sense of pride. Your goal should make you ‘raise the bar’ ultimately giving you great personal satisfaction.
Your goals should be set on par with your career and life. By doing this, you will have a greater sense of focus on what you want and how to move ahead. If your goals are not consistent, you will just end up wasting your time and will go nowhere in life.
A goal should always have a deadline. This means that you know exactly when success will come to you. Having a deadline lends the goal setter a sense of urgency. If you work on these lines, you are bound to taste quicker success.
How to set realistic goals?
While setting goals for yourself, always remember that they should motivate you. Make sure that the goals you set are very important to you and that there is a lot of value achieving them. If the outcome doesn’t interest you, you will obviously not succeed. So, motivation is very vital in achieving goals.
“You should always think of setting high priority goals”, according to a research Lifehack: Why Is It Important To Set Realistic Goals?. If you set too many goals, you will not have enough time to achieve even one of them. Achieving goals requires a lot of commitment. So, to maximize your success, you should develop a sense of urgency and an attitude of ‘I must achieve this, at any cost’.
Just like setting goals, time management is equally important. To achieve goals successfully, you should understand the importance of managing your time.
What is time management?
Time management refers to the effective and productive use of one’s time.. It depends on allocating the right time to the right activity. Time is always limited and once lost, cannot be brought back. Effective time management allows people to give specific time to things that are important.
Proper time management includes
- Efficient Planning
- Setting goals and objectives
- Setting deadlines
- Allocation of responsibilities
- Prioritizing activities based on importance
- Spending the right time towards the right activity
Your day should be well planned in advance by having a ‘To Do’ list. Make a list of all important activities that must be done for the day and allocate a specified time for each of them. High priority activities should always be on top of your list. All pending tasks should be completed one after the other. Do not begin a new activity without completing the previous ones. While completing each task, mark them as completed.
Setting goals and objectives
Working without targets and goals is similar to travelling without knowing where to go. You are bound to get lost. So, setting a target for yourself will make sure that they can be achieved and are realistic.
If you set deadlines, you will work hard and try to complete them before the stipulated time. If you take initiative and complete tasks ahead of time, people will feel that you have a sense of ownership. Set deadlines for yourself and ask yourself how much time you will take to complete each of your activities.
Allocation of responsibilities
You are not meant to do everything. There are responsibilities that others around you are better suited to carry out. Learn to decline some responsibilities and reallocate some others.
Based on the importance and urgency, learn to prioritize your tasks. You should know the difference between urgent and less important tasks. Complete task on the basis of urgency and immediate importance.
Spending the right time towards the right activity
Understand that every right thing should be done at the right time. Any task that is done at the wrong time might go to waste. If a task can be done in an hour, don’t waste a complete day on it. Do not forget to allot some time for your personal work too.
Always remember, for effective goal setting and time management, you should be organized, focused, and never misuse time. ‘There is never a better time than now’. If you feel that you have wasted your time and were not able to successfully set your goals, now is the time. It’s never too late to begin setting your goals.